4 star rating

Sherpa (beta) Review

Pros: Worked for most searches; Fast performance; Colorful interface
Cons: Doesn't understand follow-up questions; Android only;
The Verdict: Despite being in beta, the Sherpa Android personal assistant app is remarkably good at finding what you need to know.



Like the Nepalese ethnic group it's named after, the Sherpa personal assistant app is designed to help carry you through your digital life. While still in beta, this free Android app is fast, understood us well and was able to find what we were looking for. If you're looking for a Siri-like alternative on Android, this app will do the trick.

Article Continued Below


Sherpa has a purplish Nintendo anime feel. There's a small purple cartoon avatar at the top and a large microphone button and text field at the bottom. The voice sounds a bit robotic, but it was not distracting or annoying for most conversations.

Sherpa works on Android for now, but there isn't a version formatted specifically for tablets. The app currently supports English and Spanish.

MORE: 25 Best Android Apps


Sherpa's features include learning relationships (so you can say "Call my dad"), as well as sending text messages, weather reports, flight information, sports scores, posting to social networks and even performing math calculations.

However, Sherpa's best feature is the ability to respond to statements such as "I have a headache" or "I want Chinese food" and return actionable results.


Sherpa (beta)For the most part, Sherpa responded quickly and accurately as we used the app throughout our daily routine. We especially the app's colorful card-based interface, which was more engaging than Speaktoit's text-based results.

When we asked for the current weather conditions, Sherpa showed us a colorful picture of the bright sun and the temperature, along with four thumbnails below showing the forecast for the next four days. However, this assistant didn't understand the follow-up question "How about Chicago?"; instead, it showed everything from Google searches. Speaktoit and Google Now passed both of these tests easily.

MORE: Best Apps 2013

Sherpa (beta)Likewise, Sherpa returned a colorful box score, as well as results from previous games, when we asked "How did the Yankees do?" Speaktoit didn't understand the question at all -- we had to phrase it "What was the score of the Yankees game?" Still, Sherpa failed at the follow-up question, "when's the next game?"

Looking up bus routes, flight searches and a meeting request worked well. We liked how we could say "send Jamie a text I am running late" and the app knew the recipient and the message text. There wasn't as much prompting necessary as there often is for other personal-assistant apps.

Sherpa (beta)When we said "I have a headache," Sherpa again opened Google Maps, showing local pharmacies. Google Now returned Google search results with that phrase, and Speaktoit told us we should find a doctor.

This app has some unusual perks. You can transfer money by saying "transfer $10 to PayPal," although the app failed to save our PayPal email address correctly.

Sherpa also has a built-in song player. We said "play a song by Kanye West" and it started streaming the song "Through the Wire" in just a few seconds.

Sherpa did crash a few times, but to be fair, the app is currently in beta. And, while it failed to find information for a company, Sherpa was one of the few apps that heard us say "Path" and not "Pass."


Sherpa (beta)Even though it's in beta, Sherpa is one of the best voice-activated assistants because of how quickly it works and how effective it can be. We especially like the well-designed interface. While it lacks the location-based info provided by Google Now, and wasn't as good with follow-up questions as competitors, Sherpa is already carrying its own weight.

Tags: Sherpa (beta), personal assistant app, Apps, Software, reviews

Technical Specifications
Sherpa (beta)

All Product Types Accessories eReaders Laptops Networking Projectors Smartphones Software Storage Tablets
All Subcategories
All Subcategories All-Purpose Budget Business Desktop Replacement Gaming Multimedia Netbook Nettop Rugged Student Tablet PCs Ultraportable
Acer Alienware Apple Archos ASUS AVADirect Averatec BeagleBone BenQ CTL Corp. CyberPowerPC Dell Digital Storm eMachines Emtec Eurocom Everex Fujitsu GammaTech Gateway General Dynamics Getac Gigabyte Google Hercules HP HTC iBuyPower Intel Lenovo Maingear MSI Nokia Nvidia OCZ OLPC OQO Origin Panasonic Razer Sager Samsung Sony Sony PlayStation Sylvania Systemax TabletKiosk Toshiba Verizon Viewsonic Viliv Vizio VooDoo Workhorse PC ZT Systems
Minimum Rating
Any Rating Editor's Choice 4.5 Stars 4.0 Stars 3.5 Stars 3.0 Stars
Screen Size
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 21 4 5 6 7 8 9
1024x576 1024x600 1024x768 1136 x 768 1200X800 1280 x 720 1280x1024 1280x768 1280x800 1366x678 1366x768 1440x1050 1440x900 1600x768 1600x900 1680x1050 1680x945 1792 x 768 1900x1080 1920x1080 1920x1200 2560 x 1440 2560 x 1600 2560 x 1700 2880 x 1620 2880 x 1880 3200 x 1800 3840 x 2160 800x400 800x480
Weight Range
10.1 - 12.0 pounds 12.1 - 14.0 pounds 14.1 - 16.0 pounds 2 lbs 2 pounds and under 2+ lbs 2.1 - 4.0 pounds 4.1 - 6.0 pounds 6.1 - 8.0 pounds 8.1 - 10.0 pounds Over 16 pounds Under 2 pounds
more options